McLaren Honda F1 driver and management quotes ahead of Abu Dhabi GP

McLaren Honda F1 driver and management quotes ahead of Abu Dhabi GP

21.11.2016: The drivers on: the event #14 Fernando Alonso

The drivers on: the event



 
#14 Fernando Alonso



“I enjoy racing in Abu Dhabi every year. Not just because it’s become synonymous with the end of the season, but there’s a unique atmosphere there – a combination of the ‘end-of-term’ feeling, anticipation ahead of the winter development push and the buzz from the fans as we go racing for the final time in 2016.



From the cockpit, it’s incredible to race at twilight and watch the light fade as you complete lap after lap. It brings a new dimension to the spectacle and makes the whole weekend really enjoyable.




For McLaren-Honda, this race marks the end of a significant year for the team, and the last time I’ll race with my team-mate Jenson for the foreseeable future. It’s been a pleasure to work with him and I’ll miss him being in the garage next to me, but he’ll still very much be part of McLaren-Honda’s plans and I want to wish him all the best for the exciting things he has in store for the next step in his career.”

 


#22 Jenson Button



“I’m really looking forward to this weekend, and have been for a few races now. It marks a very special chapter in my life and I’ll have my friends and some of my family out in Abu Dhabi with me which I’m very excited about.



It’s going to be a hugely emotional weekend and I hope with the support of the fans, the team and the people that are closest to me, we can go out there and give it our absolute maximum and enjoy the weekend. It’s not the end of my career with McLaren-Honda, but it’s the start of a new phase that I’m incredibly positive about.



This race marks the culmination of a huge amount of hard work, dedication and passion for the sport that I love and I’m immensely proud of everything I’ve achieved in the past 17 seasons, and the fantastic progress we’ve made over the past couple of years with McLaren-Honda.




It’s been an amazing project to work on and my involvement certainly won’t end here. I’m looking forward to concluding this chapter in style and starting a new one with just as much enthusiasm, and I can’t wait to see what the future holds.”








Hear from the management



 
Eric Boullier
McLaren-Honda Racing Director




“The Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, for McLaren-Honda, cements a very positive year, where we have overcome challenges, fought hard, pushed relentlessly and seen firm progression in every area.



As I always say, we aren’t where we want to be, of course, but we’re fighting fit and looking ahead to a strong winter of further development.




I’m incredibly proud of how far we’ve come in three short years – two on the track – and indebted to the incredible commitment, steadfast loyalty and unwavering support demonstrated by our team members in the UK and Japan, our Partners, and our amazing fans.



“This weekend also marks a very significant moment for McLaren-Honda, as we bid farewell to Jenson, who will be stepping out of the cockpit after the race on Sunday to embark on a new chapter both with McLaren-Honda and in his personal life.



As we know, it’s farewell for now and not goodbye, and we’ll be working side by side with him over the coming year, when he’ll be as close to the team and our developments as ever.



Nevertheless, it’s a poignant step in our history together and an opportunity to celebrate his 17 seasons in the sport, seven with McLaren, and celebrate his many achievements on track. We’ll certainly miss him in the garage, but we look forward to continuing our relationship and the exciting projects we’ll be working on together in 2017.



“Last but not least, we approach this weekend with positivity, but the awareness that it will be a challenging grand prix on a track that is complex in character and offers a set of unique parameters within which to set up the car.



With qualifying and the race taking place in very different conditions from the earlier part of the weekend, setting up the car for all eventualities is tricky but is also what makes this venue so unique, creating an awe-inspiring spectacle for fans at the end of a long season.



The Yas Marina circuit and its ever-impressive facilities provide a stunning setting in which to go racing for the final time in 2016, and I hope we can finish the season on a high – for Jenson, the team and our fans across the world.”

 



Yusuke Hasegawa
Honda R&D Co Ltd Head of F1 Project & Executive Chief Engineer


“With the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, the 2016 Formula 1 season comes to an end. It’s been a long season for the team, but for an improving team like ours, every day spent together helps us grow stronger.


We’ll also bid farewell to Jenson, who has been the glue to the McLaren-Honda team alongside Fernando since the beginning. We’ll miss his smile at the track, but we’re very happy that he’ll continue to support the team’s development next year.



“The circuit at Yas Marina has a unique layout with a traditional race and street-like circuit combined into one, unlike the several previous races.



Each sector is very different, from slow 90-degree turns to full-throttle straights, so it will no doubt be another busy weekend to set up both the power unit and chassis to get the maximum out of the package.



“When we see the chequered flag on Sunday evening, it will mark the transition for us to fully focus on the 2017 package.



This is an exciting, albeit challenging time as we have just about three months until our next chapter begins. We hope to end our year on a positive note, and enjoy the twilight race in Abu Dhabi.”

 

 

Silvia Hoffer Frangipane- photos McLaren

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21.11.2016 / MaP

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